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Inspiring Women in Science seminar - Prof Gina Rippon

"How paradoxical is the Gender Equality Paradox? A view from the 21st Century Brain"

Professor Gina Rippon, Aston University

Tuesday 27th February, 11am, Medical Teaching Centre Lecture Theatre

Followed by lunch and networking in IBRB Lower Atrium

Join us for this talk by author and academic Professor Gina Rippon where she will explore advances in neuroscience and its relation to gender gaps in STEM. She will also discuss her career experience as a senior woman in STEM. Then join us afterwards for a lunch and networking session in IBRB Lower Atrium for a less formal chat!

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Talk abstract:

Contemporary studies into the under-representation of women in science have reported the allegedly paradoxical finding that, in the most gender equal countries, there tends to be a greater gender disparity in fields related to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). Essentialist interpretations suggest that this supports traditional explanations in terms of innate sex differences.

However, advances in 21st century social cognitive neuroscience are revealing the importance of a sense of belonging, of positive group recognition and acceptance, as powerful driving forces in human behaviour, thus implicating the organisational culture of science and scientific organisations as key to gender gaps. This talk suggests that reference to such research will provide better explanations for the persistence of gender gaps, and offer evidence-based insights into addressing gender gap issues.

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Professor Gina Rippon is a neurobiologist based at the Aston Brain Centre at the Aston University in Birmingham. She specialises in cognitive neuroimaging using state-of-the-art brain imaging techniques to investigate how the brain interacts with the world.

In her book “The Gendered Brain”, she challenges gender stereotypes of “male/female hardwired” brains and offers a better understanding of how brains get to be different.

A passionate science communicator, feminist, and advocate for better representation of women in STEM, Professor Rippon contributes to initiatives such as European Union Gender Equality Network, WISE and ScienceGrrl.